Fox made a splash in February when they announced that New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter would be joining their MLB on Fox team for the upcoming season.
According to a new report, before they announced the arrangement, they made sure it was okay with Alex Rodriguez first.
The New York Post’s Andrew Marchand reported Tuesday that before Fox Sports CEO Eric Shanks agreed to sign Jeter, he reached out to Jeter’s former teammate and current Fox Sports analyst Alex Rodriguez to make sure it would be okay with him.
“Why wouldn’t we reach out?” Fox Sports spokesman Andrew Fegyveresi told Marchand.
The personal history between the two superstars suggests that there’s plenty of good reason to confirm that they’d be able to play nice together.
Before they played together with the Yankees, A-Rod infamously took a shot at Jeter in a 2001 Esquire interview.
“Jeter’s been blessed with great talent around him,” Rodriguez said. “So he’s never had to lead. He doesn’t have to, he can just go and play and have fun, and hit second. I mean, you know, hitting second is totally different than hitting third or fourth in a lineup because you go into New York trying to stop Bernie [Williams] and [Paul] O’Neill and everybody. You never say, ‘Don’t let Derek beat you.’ That’s never your concern.”
Three years after that, Rodriguez joined the Yankees and moved to third base out of deference to Jeter. Their relationship on the same team was also said to be pretty rocky, though they both claim to have repaired things in recent years. Still, things always feel a little awkward when they get together.
The "shirtless shortstop" discussion on Sunday's KayRod Cast went from Derek Jeter saying "If I was worried about my image, you think I would have done that photoshoot, taking my shirt off?" to him saying "This will be my last visit here" after the broadcast showed the photo. pic.twitter.com/l8cpZzdQSl
— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) August 15, 2022
The ironic aspect of Fox feeling like it needed A-Rod’s approval on Jeter is that it’s not like they’ll be working together all that much. Marchand previously reported that Jeter will only work in Fox’s studio during the June London series (Fox will air one game), July’s All-Star Game, and during the Postseason in October.